WWDA News 2 September 2015

In this Edition

  • Submission to Violence, Abuse and Neglect senate inquiry
  • WWDA Invited to UNFPA International Expert Group meeting, Montevideo
  • General News

Submissions

ACDA Submission to Inquiry into Violence, Abuse and Neglect against People with Disability in Institutional and Residential Settings

In August 2015 the Australian Cross Disability Alliance, of which WWDA is a founding member, made a submission to the Australian Senate Inquiry into Violence, Abuse and Neglect against People with Disability in Institutional and Residential Settings. The Australian Cross Disability Alliance (ACDA) is a national representative body, made up of four Disabled People’s Organisations including Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA); People with Disability Australia (PWDA); the National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA); and, First Peoples Disability Network (FPDN).

Written by Carolyn Frohmader and Therese Sands and with the assistance of Dr Jess Cadwallader, the submission represents the culmination of more than two decades of people with disability and their allies campaigning and advocating for a national, independent inquiry to investigate violence and abuse against people with disability in institutional and residential settings.

The Submission includes as a accompanying document, a large number of personal stories and testimonies from people with disability, all of which have been de-identified for confidentiality purposes. These stories and testimonies are critical in illustrating the stark reality of violence in the lives of people with disability in institutional and residential settings, and in demonstrating that this violence cannot be dismissed as belonging to one institution, or one ‘type’ of institutional setting, or the fault of one ‘bad apple’. These stories and testimonies provide the human reality of the information provided in the body of this Submission.

ACDA made 30 recommendations in the Submission. Of these, the following three recommendations were particularly emphasised:

  1. A call for a Royal Commission into violence, abuse and neglect against people with disability in Australia.
  2. A call for an overhaul of the criminal justice system so that, at every step of the process people with disability are supported in accessing the same legal protections and redress as the rest of the community.
  3. A call for the establishment of an independent national statutory watchdog to protect, investigate and enforce findings regarding violence, abuse and neglect against people with disability.

You can access the full submission from the Submission section of the WWDA website or through the links below:

  • ACDA Submission to Violence in Institutions Senate Inquiry [PDF]
  • ACDA Submission to Violence in Institutions Senate Inquiry [DOC]
  • Case Studies and Supporting Documentation [PDF]
  • Case Studies and Supporting Documentation [DOC]
  • Opening Statement to Senate Inquiry [PDF]
  • Opening Statement to Senate Inquiry [DOC]

For further information

End the Violence campaign website

National Disability Abuse Inquiry website

About the Australian Cross Disability Alliance

The ACDA is a national representative body, made up of four Disabled People’s Organisations:

First Peoples Disability Network Australia (FPDN)

National Ethnic Disability Alliance (NEDA)

People with Disability Australia (PWDA)

Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA)

Visit WWDA to view all of WWDA’s recent submissions.

International News

WWDA Attending UNFPA International Expert Group meeting, Montevideo, Uruguay, September 2nd – 4th 2015

Carolyn Frohmader from WWDA was invited to participate in the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) International Expert Group meeting on the Youth and Disability Policies of Social Inclusion, Gender Equality, Non-Discrimination and Prevention of Sexual Violence initiative (2015-2018).

The initiative includes the development of an international program to strengthen policies that are inclusive, non-discriminatory, based on gender equality and the prevention of sexual violence directed at those who are subjected to it most often: youth and adolescents with disabilities. The purpose of the program is to identify, disseminate and address the violations of these rights among the population of youth and adolescents with disabilities. The goal is to develop and implement an innovative intervention model based on human rights and gender equality aligned with international standards.

WWDA was invited to participate due to WWDA’s internationally recognised expertise in the area and many years of work across the disability, violence and international human rights areas. Therese Sands, Co-CEO of People With Disabilities Australia (PWDA) will be accompanying Carolyn to the meeting.

Carolyn and Therese will be facilitating a number of workshops, panels and presentations regarding the work of WWDA, PWDA, and the WWDA Youth Network.

Carolyn and Therese will also present to international colleagues on the Australian Cross Disability Alliance model, including its work to advance the human rights of children and young people with disability.

The meeting of high level experts will take place in Montevideo, Uruguay on September 2nd, 3rd and 4th 2015.

For more information, download the meeting concept note [DOC]

Events and Representation

ACDA and WWDA attending Department of Social Services (DSS) JobAccess Gateway workshop

ACDA and WWDA will be attending the Australian Government DSS JobAccess Gateway workshop in Canberra. The JobAccess initiative was announced in the last federal budget and will be developed by the Australian Government as a central entry point into disability employment services and supports.

ACDA and WWDA on judging panel for National Disability Awards

ACDA and WWDA will be represented on the judging panel for the National Disability Awards, as part of the International Day of People with a Disability (December 3) (IDPWD) celebrations. The awards give Australians the chance to celebrate people with and without disability and organisations that have made a positive impact on the lives of people with disability. Nominations for awards close 4th September 2015. You can make a nomination at the IDPWD website